WASHINGTON — The “Space Force” television series will be hitting Netflix this month, but it’s unclear whether the real-life head of the new military branch will be tuning in.
“I have seen the trailer,” Chief of Space Operations Gen. John Raymond said of the new teaser, which dropped on Tuesday.
Netflix’s “Space Force”parody stars Steve Carell as General Mark R. Naird, a fictional Air Force general tapped to lead the new Space Force on the president’s orders — and to Naird’s own dismay.
The trailer features space operators wearing moon-printed camouflage and a stressed out Naird, who has to deal with angry members of congress and failed space technologies which cost “as much as four middle schools,” as one official ruefully tells the Space Force head.
Raymond said he is looking forward to the show, which comes out May 29, but by his own admission is not much of a television buff.
“It was funny, probably a year ago I was at home and I was looking at my bank account and I saw that dollars were being taken out for Netflix. And at the time — and please, Netflix, don’t come after me — but I didn’t watch Netflix,” he said during a Wednesday event hosted by the Space Foundation.
Raymond said his first response was to cancel the subscription, but “within about 32 seconds” his three children contacted him asking what had happened to their Netflix access.
Months later, one of his daughters told him about Netflix’s plans to create a Space Force show starring Carell —the first he had heard of the announcement. But although Raymond said Carell is a “great actor,” he wasn’t sure if the star of “The Office” had the right look to play him.
“I was hoping for Bruce Willis,” he said, referencing the Die Hard star who, like Raymond, is bald. “The one piece of advice I’d give Steve Carell is to get a haircut. He’s looking a little too shaggy if he wants to play the Space Force chief.”
During the event, Air Force Secretary Barbara Barrett referenced one scene of the teaser, which showed Naird, seemingly on the verge of a breakdown, blowing off steam in his office by singing and dancing to the Beach Boys song “Kokomo.”
“We’re all into ‘Kokomo,’” she joked. “It’s just further evidence that space is where things are happening, whether it’s Netflix or the United States’ Pentagon.”
Corrected 5/6/20 at 2:59 p.m. after Air Force public affairs clarified that Raymond had indeed seen the trailer.
Valerie Insinna is Defense News' air warfare reporter. She previously worked the Navy/congressional beats for Defense Daily, which followed almost three years as a staff writer for National Defense Magazine. Prior to that, she worked as an editorial assistant for the Tokyo Shimbun’s Washington bureau.